[REVIEW] ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser. All About Fast & Snappy Camera

Everyone may have familiar with the ASUS ZenFone 2, the first smartphone that come with 4GB of RAM. ASUS has added a new lineup of ZenFone series that include the ZenFone 2 Deluxe, ZenFone 2 Max, ZenFone Selfie and ZenFone 2 Laser.

I manage to get hold a review unit of the newly launched ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL). As a refreshment, ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser has 3 variants of screen size, 5.0-inch, 5.5-inch and 6.0-inch.

Here’s an unboxing video and my first impression of the ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL)

Build, Design & Display

The ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser 5.5-inch has almost the same dimension and weigh as the ZenFone 2 and some may mistakenly thought it was ZenFone 2. The unique arc design with its curved back and thin edge made it comfortably fit on my hand.

It features a 5.5-inch HD display (1,280 x 720 resolution) IPS display with Corning Gorilla Glass 4 protection. The screen is vibrantly bright, vivid in color and has a very wide viewing angles. It has an impressive 72% screen-to-body ratio that its compact yet has big screen display.

ZenFone 2 Laser feature Full Screen Lamination with ASUS TruVivid Technology by eliminates 2 layers sensor glass and air gap to minimize reflective and maximize clarity, bright and responsive touch screen. According to ASUS, ZenFone 2 Laser has one of the fast and responsive touch that goes up to 60ms in response time and its good for gaming and user experience.

ASUS also has this ASUS Splendid feature that allows you to adjust the display color temperature, HUE and saturation manually or choose preset for your eye pleasing. It also support Blue-Light filter that reduces blue-light emissions so you can watch and read for longer hours without straining your eyes. This is good if you have a kids that plays your phone.

The power button placed rather oddly which is on top of the phone. Most of large smartphone would have their power button/lock/unlock placed on the side for easier access. ASUS did add “Double Taps To Lock & Unlock” so we don’t need two hand to reach the power button to wake up/lock screen.

Just below the display sat three capacitive touch buttons navigation keys; Back, Home & Menu.

The back case is removable with ASUS & ZenFone branding and a speaker grill. The 3,000mAh battery is removable and can replace a new one as spare or got weaken to hold charge after long times of cycle charging.

After removed the back cover, you will find 2 SIM slot and a microSD card slot for storage expansion. Both of the SIM slots supports 2G/3G/4G and it’s dual standby, so you won’t miss any text or calls. The internal storage has only 16GB but fret not, the microSD card slot allows you to add microSD card up to 128GB.

Performance

The ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser is powered by 64-bits Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 Quad-core 1.2GHz processor coupled with Adreno 306 and 2GB of RAM. This may not be the fastest processor but it able have a run buttery smooth. We did not encounter any major lags while launching multiple apps, switching in between and also play games like Asphalt 8, Temple Run 2 without any freeze or heating problems.

It able to scores 23,780 in AnTuTu benchmarks which is not bad and comparable other mid range smartphone in the market.

On connectivities wise, it offers Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11bgn WiFi, GPS (A-GPS, GLONASS & MDSS) for better and accurate position location. Accelerometer, E-Compass, Proximity/Light Sensor, Hall-effect sensor are available.

Camera. Snappy & Fast Focus

The main highlight of this smartphone is the camera. It has Laser Auto Focus assistant (that’s why it called ZenFone 2 Laser). It sports a 13 megapixel with f/2.0 Toshiba sensor and the laser assistant able to lock focus in just only 0.03 second. This feature normally only available on flagship smartphone like LG G4, OnePlus 2 that comes with premium price tag.

This is how fast the Laser Auto Focus compare to conventional auto focus:

It has a dual color real tone flash that able to take flash photo with more natural light instead of over exposed on certain parts.

It has an excellence hardware and software combination where a lot preset camera settings are available for ease of photo taking on different scenarios.

Here’s are some sample photos taken with ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser:

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Click on the image for higher resolution

Battery

The phone is packed with 3,000mAh battery that can last you more than a full day. On my test, the phone able to lasted me for more than 15 hours with balance 7% left with almost 3 hours of SOT (screen-on-time)

Although it doesn’t support fast charging, with the bundled adaptor, 5V, 2A, it able to complete a full charge from 0% to 100% in less than 3 hours.

Here are some preloaded apps which I find it quite useful:


ASUS Mobile Manager that able to adjust the power and boost your memory for better battery life and performance.


File Manager. Well categorized files for easy lookup.

MyASUS. An app that you can get instant support via online chat and if you have send your ASUS phone, tablet or notebook for RMA, you check the status through this app.

You can control your PC with your phone seamlessly which is great for presentation and media control.


You can have multiple countries time view at one glance by adding in the list

Holidays! Everyone’s favourite! The ASUS Calendar allows you to add holidays remark on your calendar and it available for almost all countries. Another great features is the add-on Chinese and Islamic calendar where some minority you like to have it

Conclusion

The ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser may not be the best performance smartphone but if you are a camera centric user, this is a great smartphone for the budget below RM 800. It has a decent hardware specification, a great camera that has laser auto focus and large capacity removable battery.

The downside of this smartphone is it only has HD display.

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